Bitcoin landed on Wall Street with a bang.Futures on the world’s most popular cryptocurrency surged as much as 25 percent during their debut session on Cboe Global Markets Inc.’s exchange, triggering two temporary trading halts meant to cool volatility. Dealers said initial volumes exceeded expectations, while traffic on Cboe’s website was so strong that it caused delays and outages.
The exchange said all its trading systems were normal.The launch of futures traded on a regulated exchange is a watershed for bitcoin — testing infrastructure that will make it easier for legions of professional traders and mainstream investors to bet on the cryptocurrency’s rise or fall, potentially helping to steer its price. Until now, trading in bitcoin was driven mainly by individual investors who were willing to risk buying on mostly unregulated markets.
Some users of those little-policed venues have been targeted by hackers who’ve stolen digital tokens. “It was pretty easy to trade,” Joe Van Hecke, managing partner at Chicago-based Grace Hall Trading LLC, said in a telephone interview from Charlotte, North Carolina.
“I think you’ll see a robust market as time plays out.” Bitcoin futures expiring in January were priced at $17,780 as of 12:57 p.m. Hong Kong time, up from an opening level of $15,000.
About 2,300 contracts changed hands.Circuit BreakersThe first trading halt came about 2 1/2 hours after the session began, while the second one triggered after four hours. Cboe imposes circuit breakers to curb volatility, halting transactions for two minutes if prices rise or fall 10 percent, and for five minutes at 20 percent. Read more from bloomberg.com…
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